Thailand Legalizes Marijuana as a ‘New Year’s Gift’

The Thai parliament has approved the use of marijuana for medical purposes, and a member of parliament called it a “New Year’s gift” to the Thai people. However, unlike countries that have fully legalized marijuana, the use of Recreational Marijuana activities are still prohibited as reported by BBC.com (26/12).

In the past, marijuana has been used in Thailand as traditional medicine, but began to be banned in the 1930s. Countries in Southeast Asia have a number of rules that are burdensome for users, owners and the spread of drugs, and Thailand is the first country in the region to allow the use of Medical Marijuana.

The parliament, formed by the Thai military regime, provided support to change the Narcotics Law of 1979 on Tuesday. The legalization of marijuana for medical purposes was ratified after the Thai parliament added time to discuss it before the New Year holiday, Reuters reported.

The amendment to the Act will be passed and officially passed into law after it was listed in the government sheet, said The Bangkok Post. “This is a New Year’s gift from parliament to the government and the people of Thailand,” said Somchai Sawangkarn, the drafting committee’s head of the bill.

Once legalized, Thais will get the marijuana needed for medical purposes, if they have a recipe or certificate that is recognized, reports the Bangkok Post. Countries in Southeast Asia have very severe penalties for users or dealers and drug owners. And the license for the production and sale of products will be strictly controlled by the Thai government.

The newspaper, published in the capital city of Bangkok, reported that the new law also applies to kratom, a plant that grows in the Southeast Asian region that functions as a stimulant.

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